The Price of Conscience--I Lost My Citizenship Because of My Faith in "Truth-Compassion-Forbearance"
On May 21, 2000, I went to the Chinese Consulate in Munich, Germany to renew my passport. On May 23, one of the staff there called me and asked me to come over to the Consulate. An officer in the visa application department interviewed me. He put my old passport before me and asked me, "Are you the person in charge of Falun Gong in Munich?"
I replied, "Falun Gong practitioners don't have an organization, so we don't have anybody in charge. It is just that whoever has the time and the heart contributes more of his or her efforts voluntarily."
The officer asked again, "Do you know China's policy on Falun Gong?"
I replied, "I have never acknowledged that Jiang's policy of persecuting Falun Gong represents China's policy."
He raised his voice and said, "I'm asking you if you know about China's policy on Falun Gong?"
I said, "And I answered you precisely. Jiang alone cannot represent China or the one and a half billion Chinese people."
He said, "With this kind of attitude, just take your old passport home with you. Think hard and clearly before you come back again."
I replied, "I've already thought it over for a long time. I can answer you right now. No threats will change my belief in 'Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance.' Jiang has persecuted over one hundred million Chinese people who believe in 'Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance.' He is the one who has endangered the country and the people."
He interrupted me and said, "Do not talk about this here. This is Chinese territory. Please leave!" Thus, just because of my belief in "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance," I was deprived of my rights as a Chinese citizen and I was forced to leave this piece of overseas Chinese territory. Lacking a valid passport has already caused a lot of problems with my school and work in Germany.
This was the second time I had been persecuted for upholding my conscience. The first time was after the massacre in Tiananmen Square. On the morning of June 4, 1989, I saw with my own eyes many civilians and students being killed or injured by gunshots. I saw the windows and walls of a subway station filled with bullet holes. I saw bodies spread thinly on the ground after being crushed into meat patties by tanks.
After that, for twenty-four hours a day, the news on the TV kept lying about what happened. It said that Beijing citizens had rioted, that only soldiers from the People's Liberation Army had died or been injured, and there were no casualties among civilians and students. Just like the persecution of Falun Gong today, what the TV said was nothing but lies. Not only did they lie about it, they also forced everyone else to lie about it, requiring all Chinese people in all industries, businesses and schools to express their support for opening fire on the students and civilians. This is exactly the same as today's "millions of signatures opposing Falun Gong" (a petition drive launched by the Jiang regime in an attempt to justify its persecution of Falun Gong, in which schoolchildren and workers were intimidated into signing their names). The school I was attending, the Beijing University of Science and Technology, also forced all college students to explicitly show their support for the government's so called action of "putting down a rebellion." Except for me, everyone in our Electrical Engineering Department submitted to the pressure and against their will lied to express their support for the government. I was the only one that stayed silent from the beginning to the end because what the TV had publicized was different from what I had seen.
Because I was the only one in the department who had not expressed my stand, I immediately became a key target. The secretary of the Party's Branch Office colluded with the Martial-Law troop to find an excuse to arrest me. The Martial-Law troop had already gone to our school with machine guns in their hands and arrested about a dozen students, but they couldn't find any excuse to arrest me, so they planned to punish me by expelling me from school. I was forced to ask a doctor to issue a statement for me that would allow me to take a one-year sick leave. I stayed home in hiding for a year to avoid the heat of the political situation. Because of what happened, I started thinking about going abroad to continue my education, for I felt that I was deprived of the dignity of a human being in China.
With this wish of going abroad in mind and also with the wish to learn something related to traditional Chinese culture before leaving the country, I thought about qigong. At the time, many different kinds of qigong were practiced in society. Falun Gong was the only one that didn't charge money, so I decided to try it. The first day I learned the exercises at a practice site. As soon as I finished doing "Penetrating the Two Cosmic Extremes," I felt very unusual. Then I learned the sitting meditation exercise. After just moving my hands a little bit, I could feel my palms becoming very warm and I felt energy radiating out from my palms. I thought to myself, "This Falun Gong is for real!" What Teacher Li Hongzhi said answered all the questions about life that I had pondered throughout my life. The principle that Falun Gong promotes, "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance," was just what I had been searching for. After I started practicing Falun Gong, I held myself to the standard of "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance" and both my body and mind have benefited immensely. The relationships among my family members have also become more harmonious.
However, Falun Gong, which created so much good for our country and did not pose any danger, has been cruelly persecuted by Jiang's corrupt political gang. Moreover, this persecution has already extended to foreign countries. In Germany, I was threatened with my Chinese citizenship just because of my personal belief. In 1989, I was forced to choose between my conscience and my status of being a student. Today, I am again forced to face the same choice; should I be a man of conscience or should I keep my Chinese citizenship?
From the bottom of my heart, I admire Falun Gong practitioners in Mainland China. In the face of being arrested, beaten--even beaten to death--they put aside their personal interests in order for others to understand the truth. They are courageous enough to say something for justice; this includes my mother who lives in Beijing. Through practicing Falun Gong, she has been freed of many stubborn illnesses that she used to have and has a very healthy body now. Not willing to cooperate with the evil, she refused to sign her name on the so-called "millions of signatures opposing Falun Gong;" therefore, the police wanted to arrest her, and it has been more than a year since she was forced to become destitute and homeless in order to avoid being illegally arrested at home. The police have gone to her hometown in Hebei Province many times to arrest her. This is how a group of kind-hearted Chinese people, with their belief in "Truthfulness, Compassion, Forbearance," are safeguarding the truth with their lives, writing the most solemn and compassionate pages in Chinese history, and creating the future.